Tag Archives: taking notes

Waiving SAT, ACT Causes Huge Uptick in Applications to Top Schools… Grab Hiring Managers’ Attention… Novel System Improves Note-Taking

Waiving SAT, ACT Causes Huge Uptick in Applications to Top Schools

Another casualty of the pandemic was the college application process for the class of 2025.

When social distancing measures resulted in students’ inability to sit for the SAT and ACT tests, many of the Ivies and other highly sought-after colleges decided not to use them as part of the calculus for admissions. This led thousands of students who otherwise would not have applied to do so, overwhelming admissions officers at campuses across the country and potentially creating a freshman class unlike previous ones.

© The Wall Street Journal

Without the test scores–which critics say favor students from wealthy households—admissions committees were forced to gauge a student’s potential for success at their institutions by relying on a more holistic approach, which may have benefitted non-traditional students.

Another factor affecting the profile of the class of 2025 is the broader pool of applicants. This application season allowed students from rural areas as well as Black and Latinx students to partake in virtual rather than in-person tours, further opening up the possibilities for a very different freshman class.

How this experiment will play out is anyone’s guess. Experts say colleges won’t know what their classes of 2025 will look like until enrollment begins for the fall semester.

Source: Korn, M., & Belkin, D. (2021, March 16). College admission season is crazier than ever. That could change who gets in. The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved from https//:www.wsj.com

Grab Hiring Managers’ Attention

When applying for a position, job hunters have to make a good impression instantly, and that means grabbing hiring managers’ attention with a compelling e-mail. Experts offer pointers about how to attract the right eyes to a job application e-mail.

  1. Craft a clear subject line. Don’t try for cute or catchy—indicate the exact job you’re going for.
  2. Address a specific person. Do the research to find the correct individual to read the e-mail. Dear Sir or Madam is a deal-killer to most hiring managers.
  3. Describe what you can provide. Hirers want to know what skills and talents a new-hire will bring to the position. Never write about what the job would do for your career.
  4. Show you want to work. Be enthusiastic about the company to which you are applying. Refer to an actual motivator that drew you to the organization, such as hearing an interview with the CEO, listening to a company executive’s speech, or admiring the firm’s involvement in the community.
  5. Customize each e-mail. Tailor your application e-mail to the specifics listed in the job spec. Never use a template when applying for a job.
Source: Leibowitz, S., Cheong, W., Teng, M. (2021, January 24). How to write an email that gets the hiring manager’s attention at your dream company. Business Insider. Retrieved from https://www.businessinsider.com

Novel System Improves Note-Taking

Whether in a lecture or a meeting, taking meaningful notes can be challenging. Writer Ria Tagulinao came up with a system that may take you from gibberish to an organized way of revisiting details you want to remember.

Tagulinao divides her notes into four categories she labels “mind banks” and creates sections for each. She either divides one sheet of paper into four sections or uses notebook with tabs. When she takes notes, she puts information into the category that best represents what she wants to keep track of. Her four categories are:

Question bank—Ideas you didn’t understand or want to learn more about

Minutes bank—Important concepts, new ideas, factual information, quotations, or key takeaways

Idea bankAha! moments such as an idea for a new project or a thought about something you’re working on

Reaction bank—Opinions, thoughts, ideas that come as you listen

Note-taking not only serves as a repository for what was said. Research suggest that we retain information better when we handwrite our notes than when we type them in class using a notebook or laptop.

Tagulinao, R. (2020, October 14). A better note-taking system for your scattered brain. Forge.com. Retrieved from https://forge.medium.com

Handwritten Notetaking Wins, Hands Down… Workplace Agility—The Latest Management Concept… Singular They is Now Okay?

Handwritten Notetaking Wins, Hands Down

Students who take notes in longhand learn better than those who type notes, according to new research from UCLA and Princeton University. Specifically, handwriting seems to lead to better retention of information and an enhanced ability to grasp new ideas.shutterstock_262840031

Notetaking requires individuals to transform what they hear into words. Students taking notes on their computers try to keep up with what is being said, but in doing so, fail to pay attention to what they hear. So while typing notes yields more words per minute—often verbatim accounts of a lecture—reviewing those notes later seems to actually undermine learning rather than enhance it. Students who type notes forget the material quickly—usually within 24 hours, the researchers found.

On the other hand, material from handwritten notes appears to stick with the note taker longer. Scientists surmise that the physical process itself encodes the information being written more deeply in the brain. Additionally, taking notes by hand results in better organized notes, which helps when reviewing material for tests.

Nevertheless, past studies have determined that any notes are better than none.

From The Wall Street Journal

 Workplace Agility—The Latest Management Concept

A new buzz phrase has come to town, and it rides on the coattails of technology. Workplace agility is the ability of an organization to change quickly in reaction to market forces. It has its roots in agile computing, a management strategy that combines cloud computing with collaboration of small and cross-functional teams used in tech companies to create and fine-tune projects faster than the competition.

shutterstock_379676221Workplace agility benefits a broad spectrum of organizations in several ways. First, cloud-based computing has allowed workers to access information anytime, essentially extending the hours worked per day and keeping employees tethered to their jobs constantly—score one for employers. The other aspect of this increasingly popular management style is to break up large projects into smaller, more scalable tasks, which allows problems to be caught early in the creation process—another plus to the organization.

Finally, workplace agility helps organizations because it requires employees to be flexible, often meaning they are pulled off one project and moved to another, thus maximizing the workforce’s effectiveness.

It’s not surprising that only about a third of workers who practice workplace agility love it; another third resist but eventually come around. The last third? They’re the ones who hide until they’re caught… and released.

From The New York Times

Singular They is Now Okay?

 After years of correcting our students’ incorrect use of the singular they, we instructors of writing may be witnessing the acceptance of a once taboo grammatical error.shutterstock_406703422

Recently a Washington Post copy editor announced a change to the venerable news organization’s style sheet, making use of the singular they permissible. According to an article in The Chronicle of Higher Education, that is exactly how grammar rules change—“one style guide at a time.”

The article notes that it may take a while before the walls completely disallowing the singular they come down. However, there can be no doubt that the chink in the stonework is getting harder to ignore. While some may remain uppity about the common usage, few readers are confused by it. And that marks the beginning of the end of any grammar rule.

From The Chronicle of Higher Education